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In Memoriam: Hollis Turnham

By Jodi M. Sturgeon (she/her) | August 11, 2023

PHI deeply mourns the loss of Hollis Turnham, a stalwart advocate for the rights of older adults and direct care workers. Hollis passed away on August 5, 2023, leaving behind a legacy of unwavering dedication to public service and advocacy.

Born on November 4, 1951, in Gainesville, Texas, Hollis’s professional journey was marked by her commitment to older adults and the disenfranchised. A graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University and The University of Texas School of Law, Hollis’s career milestones include serving as a VISTA Volunteer attorney at a Navajo reservation and her impactful tenure as the Michigan State Long-Term Care Ombudsman.

At PHI, Hollis served as the Midwest Director and Michigan Manager for PHI-Quality Care through Quality Jobs. For 15 years, she championed the rights of direct care workers, ensuring their voices were heard at both state and federal levels. Her advocacy work was instrumental in shaping policies and practices that benefited both care recipients and caregivers.

Recognizing her immense contributions to the field, the National Association of State Long-Term Care Ombudsman (NASOP) established the Hollis Turnham Advocacy Award, a testament to her enduring impact on long-term care advocacy.

While we grieve her passing, we also celebrate Hollis’s life and the indelible mark she left on PHI and the broader community of advocates. Her legacy will continue to inspire and guide our work in the years to come.

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